I am sure we have all noticed that w/ each passing hardware generation, the gaps in releases between franchises, especially the AAA ones, get longer and longer and longer.
Games like GTA and Elder Scrolls, which would see 2-3 mainline games in one console generation or a new mainline game within a reasonable timeframe have now gone over a decade since a new entry was released w/ no signs of coming out any time soon. This is especially bad in Elder Scrolls case since 'VI' was announced back in E3 2017, since then, nothing. That was 6 years ago - The gap between Oblivion and Skyrim was only 5.
Yearly releases like COD, your sports games (Madden, FIFA, NBA 2K), and Pokemon get glitchier and buggier w/ each new installment.
Even Nintendo releases are getting lengthier w/ some of their major franchises. 3D Zelda: The have gotten consistently longer between 6-12 months. Even 3D Mario, the gap between Odyssey and whenever the next 3D Mario game releases will be the longest between releases. And the only time we heard about Metroid Prime 4 since its announcement was when they told us development had restarted.
As time goes by and we get a new batch of consoles, each set notably more powerful and advanced than the last, as the power increases, so does the amount of time in between major installments. And for some of these studios and companies to release them in a timely manner, they have go an a huge hiring spree and expand their teams considerably in order to make sure they meet their internal deadlines and not have to delay titles. And in order to compensate or justify that influx of new staff and personnel, the games have to outsell and outperform their previous installments and to do that - they need to spend THAT much more on marketing, which means the game has to sell even MORE in order to cover that cost and break even. Now, this may not be an issue for all the big boys and major studios like the Big Three, or the major 3rd parties like Square Enix, Capcom, Activision, or Bethesda. But for a lot of the smaller, medium sized studios and ESPECIALLY the indie studios? Where that money is hard to come by? Even if their games are good, they get buried or lost in the shuffle amidst all these other games from larger companies that had more marketing or bigger word of mouth, and as a result, some of those studios end up going belly-up.
And this is something that is just going to continue to grow and grow as hardware does as well, and we're already almost midway through the PS5/Xbox Series generation!
So I cannot help but ask: Is Hardware getting TOO powerful? Is it getting TOO advanced TOO fast? Fast for the industry and the workforce to keep up?
I mean, if it is going to take THAT much longer for all the games of franchises we love and enjoy to release, to the point where it may even SKIP a console generation, is it really worth it? Especially if some of those smaller studios who produce some of those games or franchises are unable to keep up or sustain themselves amidst a more demanding industry, so they go under and as a result, those franchises, if they are not bought out, go bye-bye?
Like - At what point do we say: "Stop! This is good enough! Now just make some great games!" OR "You've already got PLENTY of specs and graphics, you can leave those alone for now, focus on improving the OTHER stuff - like the processing speed so we get much faster load times. Or a stronger, better running online store. Or controllers w/ significantly better battery life." Or at least wait for the industry to catch up and get developing around the current specs down to a science before introducing the idea of going beyond.
I worry sometimes that the industry will reach a point where it gets TOO big for itself. When the games that studious tries to develop and the staff companies hire to support these games, the budget for development, marketing, all steadily climbing and everyone trying to keep up that the industry collapses underneath its weight and we have a whole new video game crash.
Hardware Comparison Threads:
PlayStation/Xbox/Switch Hardware Battle: 2021 Edition!
PlayStation 4/Xbox One/Nintendo Switch: 2019 vs. 2020
PlayStation 4/Xbox One/Nintendo Switch: 2018 vs. 2019
PlayStation 4/Xbox One/Nintendo Switch: 2017 vs. 2018
PlayStation 4: 2015 vs. 2016 vs. 2017